Current Graduate Students

Ann DeVault

Ph.D. Program
ann-devault@uiowa.edu

I earned a B.A. in Spanish and Secondary Education at the Catholic University of America and an M.A. in Foreign Language and ESL Education at Iowa. I taught Spanish at the high school level in Maryland and Florida before moving to Iowa. I recently taught Spanish in the Linn-Mar and Marion Independent School Districts and am currently teaching 7th and 8th grade Spanish classes at a middle school in Cedar Rapids. I am most interested in teacher preparation and best practices for teaching languages to students with disabilities.

Karen Goering

Ph.D. Program
karen-barkauskas-goering@uiowa.edu

I earned a BA and an MA in Hispanic Linguistics and an MAT in Foreign Language Education from the University of Iowa. During the summers I attend Middlebury College, where I am concurrently working on my MA in Spanish Literature (albeit very slowly). After many years teaching high school Spanish in the Chicago suburbs and in Durham, North Carolina, I decided to return to UI to pursue my Ph.D. in Foreign Language Education. I’m most interested in L2 reading, multimodal literacies, curriculum design and materials development. In my free time, I enjoy traveling, binge-watching Spanish-language shows on Netflix, reading comics and graphic novels in Spanish and spending time with my husband and two boys.

Christopher Gras

Ph.D. Program
christopher-gras@uiowa.edu

Prior to attending the University of Iowa, I earned a MA-TESOL from the University of Southern California where I focused on educational technology and language fossilization. After teaching in both intensive and bridge ESL programs as well as performing administrative duties for a number of years in the State University of New York system, I sought an opportunity to teach English overseas. In 2015, I accepted a U.S. State Department Fulbright Fellowship and became an EFL lecturer at Kahramanmaraş Sütçü İmam Üniversitesi in Southern Turkey. During my year abroad, I designed numerous departmental language assessments and was able to brush up on my Turkish. As a doctoral candidate in the FL/ESL Program, I plan on advancing my understanding of educational technology and second language assessment by conducting research in a field I am passionate about and engaging in meaningful collaboration with others who share similar interests.

Darrin Hetrick

Ph.D. Program
darrin-hetrick@uiowa.edu

Working with English language learners has been a career I have thoroughly enjoyed over the past 15 years. After getting my B.A. from Oklahoma Wesleyan University, I went to Croatia to teach EFL with a humanitarian aid organization. Upon returning, I pursued my M.A. in Intercultural Studies and TESOL from Wheaton College (IL). From there, my family ventured back to SE Europe—this time to Bosnia where my wife and I directed an EFL program. Throughout my career, I have also had the chance to teach ESL stateside in high schools, refugee resettlement programs, community colleges, and workplaces. Now, at The University of Iowa, I am interested in researching language policy issues, particularly as they relate to refugees in rural areas.

Kye Gon Lee

Ph.D. Program
kyegon-lee@uiowa.edu

I am from South Korea. I received a B.A. in English and an M.A. in English Education for Children in Korea. I taught English for children through college students in various levels in Korea for many years. I also earned an M.A. in Educational Measurement and Statistics from the University of Iowa. Currently I am a Ph.D. student in Foreign Language and ESL Education, and some of my areas of interest include language learning and teaching in multimedia, culture, and assessments.

Yuchen Liu

Ph.D. Program
yuchen-liu-4@uiowa.edu

I am from Nanjing, China. I got my B.A. in English Education in 2012. After graduation, I taught EFL at the high school level in an international institute in Shanghai, China, and I taught college English for Special Purposes in the Nanjing Institute of Industry and Technology. In 2014, I pursued my M.A. in TESOL from Murray State University in Kentucky. I hope to conduct research on language learning for ESL/EFL students with Learning Disabilities (LD) or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I also volunteer for some local organizations, such as the animal shelter, the writing program, the Chinese program, and the volunteer board. UIowa is an all-around university, I am able to find versatile resources here to enrich my academic and personal life.

 

Diane Neubauer, 杜雁子

Ph.D. Program
diane-neubauer@uiowa.edu

Before coming to UI, I taught Mandarin Chinese in Illinois and Colorado for ten years at elementary, middle, and high school levels. I continue to teach adults mainly online. Language teaching and learning is fascinating. Some of my main interests include language teacher development and coaching, Second Language Acquisition and its relationship to instruction, comprehension-based teaching approaches, and L2 Chinese language development, particularly related to reading Chinese character texts. I have a B.A. in East Asian Studies from Wittenberg University, an M.A. in Religion from Trinity International University, and Chinese language teacher certification in Wisconsin. My husband and I raise backyard hens and enjoy the Iowa countryside.

Alejandro Pérez Belda

Ph.D. Student
antonioalejandro-perezbelda@uiowa.edu

I have completed a Masters in Teaching Spanish as a second language in Spain (where I was born and raised) and a Masters in Hispanic Linguistics from the University of Iowa. I have also worked as a Dual Language teacher for three years, and I am fluent in both written and conversational English and Spanish with a working knowledge of Portuguese. I am now working in different research and/or support projects regarding Dual Language Education in Iowa. I aim to achieve a better understanding of teachers’ needs in Dual Language Programs and develop a good instructional model for teachers’ improvement and professional development. As a graduate student, I have also complemented my student role at the University of Iowa with my responsibilities as a Spanish Language Teacher Assistant (T.A.) for six semesters, and as a Spanish Department Level Supervisor for two semesters.

Katherine H. Priske

Ph.D. Program
katie-priske@uiowa.edu

Katie Priske is a PhD student in the Language, Literacy, and Culture program and is also currently enrolled in the teacher education program to get her secondary teaching license. Her areas of research specialization include young adult literature, feminism, reader response theory, and critical youth students

Kelli A. Rushek

Ph.D. Student
kelli-rushek@uiowa.edu

Kelli A. Rushek is a PhD. candidate in the Language, Literacy, and Culture program in the College of Education at the University of Iowa. Her research examines how early career English teachers teach about race in schools within systems of neoliberal discourse and shifting demographics. She was a secondary English teacher in Chicago Public Schools for ten years, and her research is available in the journals Linguistics and Education and Changing English: Studies in Culture and Education among others. In the fall of 2020 she is teaching Reading and Teaching Adolescent Literature and Teaching Reading in the Content Areas. She also is a co-chair of the Professional Development committee of the AERA Graduate Student Executive Board.

Annette Vernon

Ph.D. Student
annette-vernon@uiowa.edu

After teaching English for Academic Purposes to university students in China for two years, I decided to pursue my Ph.D. and accepted an offer of admission from the University of Iowa. Before I began teaching, I attended the University of Aberdeen in Scotland and earned my MA in TESOL. I am from Upstate New York and studied at SUNY Albany for my bachelor’s degree. Between my undergraduate and master’s studies, I spent a year in the Netherlands as part of a cultural exchange. While there I studied Dutch, which is where my passion for second language teaching and learning developed. During my free time, I enjoy crocheting, sewing, baking, reading novels, spending time outside, and lending a hand on my partner’s organic vegetable farm.

Fang Wang

Ph.D. Program
fang-wang@uiowa.edu

Before coming to the US, I was an EFL teacher at an English institute in China. In 2013, I started my masters program in TESOL at University of Rochester. Since then, I have been working as an ESL instructor at non-profit organizations, local elementary schools, and in an Intensive English program. I joined the PhD program in Foreign Language and ESL Education at The University of Iowa in 2015 with a research interest in second language reading and writing assessment. In the summer of 2017, I was a test development intern at Educational Testing Service (ETS) and a research intern at the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA). My current research is focused on reading and writing relationships in non-academic contexts. In my spare time, I love travelling and camping.

Lisa Wymore

Ph.D. Program
lisa-wymore@uiowa.edu

I am originally from Nebraska but have lived in Iowa for many years. I completed my B.A. in Elementary and Early Childhood Education and M.A.E. in Elementary Reading and Language Arts with a focus on Bilingual Education from the University of Northern Iowa. I spent numerous years as an ESL/Bilingual teacher. During that time, I helped establish the district’s two-way dual language program, taught literacy and math in English and Spanish, and served as the district coordinator of ESL & Dual Language Programs. In addition to my doctoral studies at the University of Iowa, I work as a consultant for English language learners/Title III with an Area Education Agency. I am interested in bilingual education, assessment, literacy development, and preparation and professional learning for K-12 teachers working with English learners.

Yafei Ye

Ph.D. Program
yafei-ye@uiowa.edu

I’m from Henan, China. I earned my M.A. in TESOL from University of Delaware in 2014 and started working as an ESL instructor and Lab assistant at its English Language Institute after graduation. I’m currently pursuing my Ph.D. in Foreign Language and ESL Education at the University of Iowa. And I’m working as a research assistant for the ACCEL project. My research interests include second language acquisition, language transfer, teacher education, and English writing. During my free time, I love hanging out with my friends and playing sports like table tennis, tennis, badminton, etc. I’m also learning skateboarding.


Please note that this list does not include every current graduate student in our program.

Please contact Dr. David Cassels Johnson if you would like to add or update your information on this page.